Rouben R., North Hollywood, CA
My sister Rosita suffered from Glossopharyngeal Neuralgia on her left cranial nerve #9 for several years. It causes sharp, jabbing, electric, or shock-like pain deep in the throat and left ear. She was not able to work, sleep, rest or have a moment of peace. No medication helped. At best they just dulled the pain a little for a short time
Rosita has been under Dr. Shahinian’s care for the duration of her illness. Dr. Shahinian correctly diagnosed her condition and recommended endoscopic microvascular decompression surgery to relieve it. My sister enjoyed about two pain-free years. But then, her pain returned with a vengeance. Dr. Shahinian prescribed an MRI, which showed a little white mass on her left cranial skull base extending into her neck. Dr. Shahinian immediately diagnosed it as a schwannoma on nerve #9. It appears that this tumor was microscopic and not detectable at the time of the original diagnosis. Dr. Shahinian assured us that he could remove the tumor and relieve her pain.
He also encouraged us to get other opinions. My sister’s pain was worsening by the day, and she could not sleep. I knew we were running out of time. The surgeons at UCLA Medical Center were baffled by her condition. The surgeons at USC required many painful steps before they would even attempt the surgery and gave little assurance that they could remove the whole tumor.
After hearing these options, my sister and I were even more convinced that Dr. Shahinian was the only surgeon competent, confident and comfortable enough to perform the surgery. Besides, Rosita believed in him wholeheartedly. She could not imagine starting over with a new doctor. During all the years of suffering from unspeakable pain, he has been there for her, day and night, to give her hope, courage and comfort. I would receive calls from my sister during the painful times almost daily. I would feel so helpless and frustrated.
Dr. Shahinian was the only one I could turn to for support. During all this time, there is not one call he did not return. He has always been caring and cordial to us. I always felt so much better after talking to him. During these difficult years, he could have walked away at any time and say he couldn’t help us anymore. But not Dr. Shahinian. He stood by us through the rough times and gave us hope and courage. He never charged us a dime for all his time and efforts. He just cared and put himself and skills at our disposal. I don’t know of any other doctor who would do that. I am indebted to him forever and consider him my brother. I don’t know if I would have made it through some of the tough days without him. He is an angel that the good Lord sent us in our time of need.
Dr. Shahinian was successful in removing the entire schwannoma during the last surgery. My sister now no longer suffers from debilitating pain and can finally sleep at night. She is returning to her normal functions little by little.
Ours is just one story out of thousands. Thousands of unfortunate souls, having lost hope and doomed to a life of unbearable pain, have somehow find their way to his office. They are all greeted with a warm smile and reassuring words. They all get the help they need and a second lease on life. Humility, compassion beyond belief, caring and humanity backed up by unparalleled surgical skills and medical knowledge. That is how I would describe this man.
Dr. Shahinian has gone well above and beyond the call of duty in treating his patients. He should be commended and recognized for his efforts. I believe that other surgeons should learn his less invasive techniques instead of continuing their antiquated ways.
North Hollywood, CA
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